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Valorant tier list: The best agents to play in 2021

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As Valorant has matured into a true competitive tactical shooter, so too has its meta. With 15 agents to now pick from, finding the right character for you – and your team – is harder than ever. Luckily for you, we’ve done the leg work to develop this handy Valorant tier list.

Our tier list, which is updated with every big Valorant patch, takes the current meta into consideration, along with the overall effectiveness of each and every agent. You’ll find that the meta changes ever so slightly as you progress through the Valorant ranks, so do your best to adapt to situations on the fly.

So if you’re trying to decide which agent you should main or who you should spend more time grinding, then let us help you. We’ve spent countless hours crunching the numbers and dying hundreds of time just so you don’t have to.

While we do list the Valorant agents in order of their effectiveness, it’s important to stress, however, that none of them are downright unplayable. Riot Games has done a great job in balancing the abilities of its characters and it helps that all guns are shared. As long as your economy is in a good place, you should be fine to play with any agent you choose.

vALORANT Tier list

Tier Agents
Tier 1 Jett, Omen, Raze, Reyna
Tier 2 Astra, Killjoy, Sova, Breach, Sage, Phoenix
Tier 3  Reyna, Brimstone, Cypher, Yoru, Viper
Tier 4 Skye

Now we’ve laid out our Valorant tier list, we’re going to explain how we came by this ranking by going through each and every agent.

Valorant character Jett stands in front of a blurred background, nonchalantly juggling a kunai in her hand

Tier 1

JETT

Jett is the fastest agent in the roster. Although she doesn’t have the same surprise elements that Omen may have in teleportation, Jett can startle players by her quick movements and vertical abilities. The Korean duelist commands air, so she can launch herself upwards or forwards, and her passive means she can glide rather than fall to the ground (if you remember to hold space).

Players in the past liked to argue about how effective she actually is, but in this patch, that argument has been settled. Professional and high level players have proved Jett can be devastating as an entry fragger – providing your aim is on point, of course.

RAZE

Valorant fans have complained about Raze’s abilities being too focused on damage in the past, which is a step away from the game’s philosophy that abilities are second to guns. Riot Games has since balanced her a little since launch, so she’s not as powerful as she used to be.

As such, her pick rate declined quite rapidly. Until patch 2.06 that is. Now seen as the ideal pairing with Jett since she can often come out on top in chaotic duels.

OMEN

If you like your Overwatch, then you probably already know Omen’s abilities quite well. The agent, which is suspiciously like Blizzard’s Reaper, has teleportation abilities. He can be everywhere and anywhere and if played right, can be a deadly agent against a well organised team.

Omen has powerful abilities, but being unpredictable is key. Well versed players will know standard Omen plays, so if you want to get the edge on enemy teams you’re going to want to get creative. His smokes are helpful and his paranoia ability is great for blinding enemies  hiding just around the corner. If you’re new to the game, Omen is a really fun agent to try out.

Omen is a defensive powerhouse, and definitely Tier 1 when defending. Offensively though, he excels at nothing much more than forcing the enemy into positions, and needs a good squad around him. Still, as the meta has evolved, he’s gone from a passenger in the beta to a key figure in the game’s current format.

Astra wears blue and holds up a rifle next to her head, pointed in the air. In her other hand she is creating a galaxy-shaped portal

Tier 2

Astra

We know Astra is the most recent addition to Valorant, but she’s pretty powerful, and deserves her place in Tier 2. When she was first released, there were many calling for her to sit at the top of the Valorant tier list, but after getting some game time with her, it’s clear she’s not as powerful as first thought. However, that being said, she’s still in a very good spot.

To use any of Astra’s abilities, you must enter Astral Form. When she enters this form, Astra can place stars on the map, which she can subsequently activate to use her basic abilities. From a Gravity Well to pull in enemies, to Nova Pulse that can concuss enemies, or creating a Nebula which acts as throwing smoke. Her smokes can also be Dissipated to give a brief smoke effect and return her star for future use, which can lead to all manner of bluffs and double bluffs.

Her Ultimate divides the entire map into two with a giant wall which dampens sound and blocks incoming fire. This can help Astra’s whole team to hide their actions and surprise opponents.

Astra is quite a difficult agent to use effectively, but if you can perfect your gameplay we think you’ll go far. If you’re a fan of going ‘big brain’ on your opponents and affecting the entire map from the get-go, then Astra could be your new main. We expect to see her pop up in Valorant tournaments before too long – or receive a nerf. Only time will tell.

BREACH

Breach is possibly one of the most complex agents in the game, so bear that in mind when playing as him. His abilities can often take their toll on teammates and prompt arguments if used incorrectly. Without proper coordination, there’s a whole host of things that can happen as a direct result of Breach’s abilities.

However, in an attacking-focused meta, Breach shines with his stuns and flashes, allowing teams to take sites with relative ease. However, he can be a pain to get to grips with for new players, but if you’re a high ELO player, you’re going to want a Breach on your team – especially on Split.

killjoy

Killjoy has enjoyed a strong start to life in Valorant, debuting in Tier 1. However, Reyna had a similarly successful debut before the opposition figured out some fairly comprehensive strategies for stopping her.

That said, Killjoy does appear to bring more to the table than Reyna, and will likely remain in and around Tier 2 for a while, barring a sudden meta change or another big nerf.

Her ability to distract opponents with turrets while planting the bomb has been deadly so far. Her loadout is both unique and powerful, which makes her a great agent for any squad.

Oh, and you can finally pick up her nanoswarms now, winner winner.

PHOENIX

Phoenix is one of the most self-sufficient agents on the roster. He’s a fiery (literally) Londoner who controls various flame abilities. Like Viper, he can put up a wall which prevents enemies’ sight lines, and like Brimstone he’s got a Molotov. Although these abilities hurt other players, they also heal Phoenix. His ultimate Run It Back means the agent can run in, hopefully, take down an agent or two, before being teleported back to the start of the ultimate with all his health restored. This makes it a great ability for aggressive players with little risk involved. Mix these together and Phoenix is a good team player, providing he’s used right of course.

With his forgiving dueling potential, Phoenix has cemented his place in Tier 2. He’s not quite at the top because, at the moment, the dangerous duellist duo of Raze and Jett is favoured.

SAGE

Sage is the closest thing Valorant has to a support character. She can heal herself or others during a round, effectively giving everyone a little bit more longevity in the playing field. Her ultimate ability also allows her to resurrect a teammate, traditionally making her an important agent in any Valorant composition.

Sage isn’t just a support though as she has some of the best environmental abilities. She can wall off areas and take her enemies by surprise or force them to give away their position by shooting it down. Her slow orbs can be great for defending points or for gathering information. After getting a recent nerf to her abilities (including her solo heals), Sage’s pick rate has fallen.

Sova

Sova is a great agent for team plays. With recon abilities and the ability to do a little bit of damage, playing Sova is an art. So if you’re looking to play him, you’re going to need to know your angles. Sova’s recon arrows are great for gathering information but only if you know where to put them. Sova could be at the top of this list, but if you’re new to Valorant, knowing how to use him properly is a pain, and if you’re solo queueing, all that information you’re gathering may not be worth much if your teammates are going it alone.

The archer also has his drone, which again, is great for reconnaissance, but it’ll give away your position pretty quickly. Like Cypher’s camera, it has a dart to mark opponents, but it can be easily destroyed and it’s hard to hide.

He’s by far the game’s best intel gatherer, but learning how best to use those abilities takes time.

Cypher Valorant

Tier 3

CYPHER

Cypher’s suffered nerfs to his cameras and his tripwires in recent patches and since then, his pick rate has tanked. While he used to be one of the best agents in the game for information gathering, his nerfs and recent changes the meta, have seriously impacted his effectiveness.

Expect to see some buffs some his way soon.

BRIMSTONE

Brimstone is deceivingly useful on the battlefield. If you know Valorant, you know that many agents will have smokes – orbs of obstructing smoke or effects which prevent enemies from seeing your position. Brimstone’s, in particular, are useful because they drop directly from the sky. This might not sound important, but it means enemies have no way of knowing where Brimstone is placing them from, so you can continue to hold your position and wait for them to push.

His ultimate, Orbital Strike, has more than one use too. Although it can be used to attempt to kill enemies, it’s also really useful for denying plants and defuses. It’s also pretty useful to prevent rushes too.

With competition from controllers like Astra and Omen, Brimstone has his work cut out to define the meta right now.

REYNA

Reyna was, at first, a little bit of a surprise to players. The playerbase was just starting to settle into a routine, knowing what agents did what, and where they were best placed, when all of a sudden this new agent arrived with new abilities. Players initially figured out that she’s quite a selfish agent, with not much to offer when it comes to team play.

However, when devs soon realised that she was a terrifying agent in solo and professional play, she was nerfed into the ground. Now Reyna players have to decide when and where to use her charges in order to survive – and these life or death moments aren’t good to have in ranked play.

YORU

Yoru is a relatively new agent to Valorant, but despite that, his kit is really lacking. As a duelist, Yoru doesn’t offer much in comparison to someone like Phonenix, and as such, has a realtive low pick rate in Valorant ranked.

If you like lurking and suprising enemies with a well-timed flank, Yoru might be for you, but unfortunately the recent buffs in patch 2.06 haven’t fixed many of his flaws.

VIPER

Despite a number of buffs, Viper is still one of the worst agents in the game. While she has received a fair bit of love in the 2.06 patch, she’s still not a meta agent.

Yes, she’s largely situational and can lock down a site by herself in a matter of seconds, but when it comes to teamplay, Viper is not your girl. It’s a real shame because aesthetically Viper is one of Valorant’s coolest characters, but she’s very much style over substance.

Tier 4

SKYE

Skye’s build is good for information gathering, but only when you have a team who will act on that information. While her heal and flashes might be attractive to some players, she doesn’t have much else going for her. She’s also entirely dependent on teamplay. While she’s a great pick for five stacks and competitive games, she’s less viable in solo queues.

As such, Skye is like Marmite, you either love her or hate her.

And that’s that. If you’re planning on making your way all the way to Radiant in Valorant ranked, then you’re definitely going to need to get to grips with different agents. Obviously the meta will change with each and every update, so make sure you check back here to see where the game’s agents place in the future.

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Source: https://www.theloadout.com/valorant/agent-tier-list

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Virtus.pro mistaken for terrorist group after 2016 CS:GO prize money blunder

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Reflecting on the ten-year anniversary of its inception, Virtus.pro has been sharing some fond memories and stories with fans from its journey in esports. But one story involving a suspect bank transfer from Counter-Strike developer Valve makes for particularly hilarious reading, with Virtus.pro being mistaken for a “borderline terrorist organisation”, according to its owner.

As part of the celebrations, Virtus.pro recalls that following the MLG Major Championship: Columbus in 2016, Valve began releasing money to teams that was generated by the sale of team-branded weapon stickers within the game. While team owners across CS:GO esports would be awaiting the money with open arms, Valve’s wording on its payment to Virtus.pro almost landed the organisation in hot water.

According to Anton Chereppenikov, the CEO and owner of ESforce, the group that owns Virtus.pro, “the employees of the Lithuanian bank with which we cooperated with at the time were shocked and frightened” after Valve’s bank transfer was worded simply as “weapon sticker sales”.

Chereppenikov says the transfer was denied by the bank, who believed Virtus.Pro was some kind of terrorist group doing weapon deals with a private company.

However, there was a happy ending, as Chereppenikov says the team got in touch with the bank, explained the situation and what CS:GO actually was, and its weapon sticker money was paid out.

While esports has become more widely recognised and talked about in the mainstream in recent years, a lack of knowledge around the industry  in 2016 almost saw Virtus.pro finding itself the top of INTERPOL’s most wanted list, rather than the CS:GO world rankings.

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Source: https://www.theloadout.com/csgo/virtus-pro-2016-terrorist-group-mistake

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Reported: Bilibili obtains exclusive Overwatch League broadcast rights in China

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Bilibili Esports has reportedly signed an exclusive Chinese broadcast deal with Activision Blizzard for the Overwatch League (OWL).

Per reports from The Esports Observer and Pandaily, Bilibili confirmed that it was granted exclusive broadcasting distribution rights in China for OWL, which includes further development of commercial interests and promotional support.

Image credit: Activision Blizzard / Bilibili

RELATED: Overwatch League unveils 2021 structure and $4.25m prize pool

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In April 2020, it was reported that Bilibili replaced Banana Culture as the league’s Chinese production partner. The streaming site has since secured the hosting rights of OWL Overwatch Contenders and Overwatch Open Division tournaments in China.

Bilibili, also called ‘B Site’ in China, was launched in 2010 as a video sharing site that focuses on gaming, comics, and animation.

In 2018, the company cemented its position in esports by purchasing its own Overwatch League team, Hangzhou Spark. Being a franchise partner of Activision Blizzard certainly didn’t hurt Bilibili’s chances of obtaining the broadcasting rights it wanted.

RELATED: IBM introduces AI-driven Overwatch League Power Rankings

Bilibili also obtained exclusive broadcasting rights to all major League of Legends global events last year. The three-year deal began in 2020 and runs through the 2023 League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational.

The fourth season of Overwatch’s franchised league began on April 16th. This year, competitors are divided into two groups based on location. The East division consists of eight teams competing in China and South Korea, namely the Chengdu Hunters, Guangzhou Charge, Hangzhou Spark, Los Angeles Valiant, New York Excelsior, Philadelphia Fusion, Shanghai Dragons, and Seoul Dynasty.

Esports Insider says: China is home to the largest gaming market in the world. Companies like Activision Blizzard and Riot Games know that tapping into the country’s audience is critical for global success, especially when events are hosted in the region. If this report is true, Bilibili’s position as China’s answer to Twitch continues to strengthen.

ESI Podcasts | Digest, Focus, Insight

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Source: https://esportsinsider.com/2021/04/bilibili-overwatch-league-broadcast/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=bilibili-overwatch-league-broadcast

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PSG Talon takes the W at the PCS 2021 Spring Split playoffs

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LoL Teh “GravityWillFall” Wi-Liam

After topping the group stages and winning the grand finals in stunning fashion, PSG Talon will represent Southeast Asia in the coming MSI 2021.

PSG Talon secures their place in the upcoming Mid-Season Invitational 2021 by ploughing through the competition in the PCS 2021 Spring Split playoffs and taking the entire tournament by storm. To add salt to their opponents’ wounds: PSG Talon lost only a single game throughout their time in both the group stages and playoffs.

In only their second game in the playoff stage, PSG Talon faced off against Beyond Gaming, knocking them down to the lower bracket to go up against Machi Esports. After a thrilling best-of-five series, Beyond Gaming got a second chance to face off against PSG Talon once more but unfortunately, did not take their chances and lost in another three-nil sweep.

PSG Talon v Beyond Gaming – Part One

The only game that PSG Talon ever lost in the group stages was against Beyond Gaming so they went into the winner bracket final with a slim chance of being able to take a game or two off of PSG Talon. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case as PSG Talon came out swinging in all three games, showing us why they deserved to be in the finals.

In all three games, PSG Talon was able to stifle Beyond Gaming’s strategies with ease, making it even harder for them to execute their game plan. PSG Talon also showed their flexibility by picking 14 different champions in those three games with Leona being the sole exception as she was picked in the first two games.

PSG Talon v Beyond Gaming – Part Two

Having already beaten Beyond Gaming once in a best-of-five series, PSG Talon had to do it all over again, this time in the grand finals. While Beyond Gaming did manage to overcome Machi Esports to make it into the grand finals, they still had a very steep mountain to climb.

In the grand finals, PSG Talon picked both Gnar and Kai’Sa three times, which goes to show how potent these picks are in the current meta. We also highlighted both champions as some of the most played during this patch. They also chose Volibear and Leona two times each. Beyond Gaming, on the other hand, went with Tristana and Alistar in all three games as well as Hecarim and Jayce for two.

While all three games went past 30 minutes, it didn’t feel like PSG Talon were seriously challenged as they looked quite at ease playing against Beyond Gaming once more. They showed real composure, technical ability, as well as a keen awareness of what’s going on and being able to counteract that.

Mid-Season Invitational 2021

With their slot already confirmed, PSG Talon will be in Group B of the upcoming MSI 2021, alongside MAD Lions (LEC Spring 2021 winners), İstanbul Wildcats (TCL Winter 2021), and paiN Gaming (CBLOL 2021).

QuickPoll

Can PSG Talon go all the way this year?

Most definitely
Thank you for voting!

They’ll fall short
Thank you for voting!

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Source: https://www.gosugamers.net/lol/news/54255-psg-talon-takes-the-w-at-the-pcs-2021-spring-split-playoffs

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While Blacklist dance, Cignal struggle

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Mobile Legends Jarrad “Belandrial” Adams

headline photo courtesy of Blacklist International

While Week 3 of MPL – PH Season 7 ended in the best way for some, others faced an upward struggle moving forward.

After an elongated break due to an extension of the Enhanced Community Quarantine, Mobile Legends Professional League – Philippines Season 7 returned to action over the weekend for Week 3. For Cignal Ultra, the weekend would see four straight series, as the team finally got a chance to show their skills, while on the other side of things, Blacklist International were fighting to remain unbeaten with their fantastic new roster. In between those stories are also a multitude of developing ones, as teams battled through to the midway point in the regular season journey.

Cignal Ultra’s brilliance versus Bren Esports

Having not played for the opening two weeks, Cignal’s first foray into MPL – PH Season 7 hit them hard, as they fought through four opponents over the Week 3 action. Cignal were, unfortunately, unable to take a single series win out of Week 3, but they did show some signs of being an unstoppable team. Going up against Season 6 champions, Bren Esports, Cignal pulled off one of the biggest turnarounds we’ve seen in game 2 – shaking the nerves of the already shaky Bren. Although ultimately losing the series, and all series this weekend, Cignal can look to a few shining moments to move forward with.

Work Auster Force succumb to Blacklist International

After losing their first series in MPL – PH Season 7, Work Auster were a Force to look out for this weekend. With caster Leo moving into a technical coach role for the team, we were ready to see what they could do – and they delivered in a big way. Destroying both Onic PH and Cignal seemed simple for the team, but their final hurdle for Week 3 were the titans of Season 7 so far – Blacklist International. Although eventually losing the series 1-2, having their streak broken, Work Auster showed that they are going to be one of the biggest teams to watch moving into a massive Week 4.

Blacklist International’s dance of the undefeated

What more is there to say about Blacklist International’s MPL – PH Season 7 performance that has not already been said multiple times, especially when they remain undefeated – except to take a look at their winning moment against Work Auster Force and see just what a great time the team is having.

Pillow fights, praise and a synchronised dance around their Bootcamp table were the scenes as the team claimed yet another victory – and who can really blame them when they seem like an unstoppable juggernaut of MLBB power right now.

Aura PH, Nexplay Esports and the rest

Currently leading the Group A standings, Aura PH have almost been overlooked in their opening three weeks of MPL – PH Season 7 action. Having only lost to Blacklist so far, Aura have flown by under the radar to become another team to look out for in the coming weeks. With wins over both Onic PH and Omega in Week 3, the team have a huge Week 4 ahead of them.
Nexplay Esports begun the season on such a high, destroying Bren Esports in Week 1, but have fallen a long way since, with a loss streak. However, a big win over the Diggie-strat Cignal saw the team finally pull themselves up and look toward a single series next week in which to excel.
While Bren Esports scrapped a victory out of the weekend, landing their second in the season, we have to ask if it will be enough moving into Week 4 soon as they still seem to have many gaps being exploited. Across the rest of the board there are no really big surprises currently, with the table showing a fairly tight pack in the middle to lower portion – while some teams cruise out ahead.

As Week 4 of the MPL – PH Season 7 approaches, we wait with bated breath to see what new stories might unfold. We will have further news on the matches coming in Week 4 later this week, so check back if you want to remain up to date on all the MLBB news, especially dealing with MPL – PH Season 7.

QuickPoll

Can Cignal Ultra pull themselves back in Week 4?

Doubtful
Thank you for voting!

Definitely
Thank you for voting!

Jarrad “Belandrial” Adams

Belandrial has spent most of his years following Dota 2 closely, but now has found a new home in the complex world of Mobile Esports. When not watching nearly every possible esports title available, you can find me running around Azeroth or building strange bases in Valheim.

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Source: https://www.gosugamers.net/mobile-legends/news/54257-while-blacklist-dance-cignal-struggle

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